‘Zen’ on being ‘stuck’ & the value of a 10-cent screw
Your motorcycle breaks down. In order to fix it, you need to open a little compartment in the engine.
The compartment is held shut by a screw whose threads have been stripped off and you are unable to open it because of a stupid 10 cent screw.
The famous book “Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance” describes this exact scenario:
“Normally screws are so cheap and small and simple you think of them as unimportant. But now, as your Quality awareness becomes stronger, you realize that this one, individual, particular screw is neither cheap nor small nor unimportant.
“Right now this screw is worth exactly the selling price of the whole motorcycle, because the motorcycle is actually valueless until you get the screw out.
“With this reevaluation of the screw comes a willingness to expand your knowledge of it.”
Bryan Todd has been devouring this book and he sent this quote to me. Yes, the guy is absolutely right: Until you extract and replace that 10-cent screw, the whole motorcycle is worthless.
Sometimes ten-cent, seemingly insignificant things become very important in the scheme of your motorcycle or your business.
Sometimes 80% of your results come from 20% of what you do. And sometimes, 100% of your results come from 0.01% of what you do. And sometimes 0.01% of what you should have done cancels out 100% of what you did do.
Sales and marketing is a sequential process. Which means that everything that happens between the introduction and the sale is 100% important. Anything that interrupts this process can be fatal to your business.
Sales and marketing are the most hazardous parts of a business to outsource. Things like payroll and bookkeeping and manufacturing, easy to outsource. Your voice and your identity, almost impossible.
- Sales and marketing is worthy of your passion, devotion and dedication. It is typically the highest leverage activity in any business. And despite the fact that many “academic types” sneer at it, it’s still true: Nothing happens until somebody sells something.
- You MUST master two things: ONE way of getting traffic, and ONE way of converting it. If you achieve mastery, it will be perfectly OK to be merely “competent” at the other things and your business will still flourish.
(I am merely competent at affiliate marketing and teleseminars, for example, but my mastery of Google Adwords and copywriting got my business off the ground. They were necessary before affiliates and teleseminars could work for me at all. Others may master affiliate marketing first, and then let their affiliates do Adwords for them; but they still have to master some method of conversion first.)
- You must not let anything get in the way of your path of mastery. You go wherever you need to go, buy whatever you must buy, seek advice from whomever can provide it, until you achieve this mastery.
- Your investment in the mastery of these two things will have a 10,000 percent ROI once you achieve it. Sometimes you spend ten thousand dollars to get rid of one stripped screw, and sometimes… that’s perfectly OK.
- You must be *extremely* cautious about investing time and money outside of your core mastery, and wary of any distraction.
Sometimes “seemingly minor” aspects of traffic generation and conversion are like that stripped 10-cent motorcycle screw: There’s one obstacle, one niggling thing that’s driving you nuts and standing in the way of a big breakthrough.
It astonishes me how little value some people put on education. Example: Most people reading this message have already purchased my Definitive Guide to Google AdWords, so I’m probably preaching to the choir.
But you should know… there are some people who will spend $200 per month, $1000 per month, $5000 per month and more and will REFUSE to spend 49 bucks to get a book that will help them master it. There are some people who will never buy a book. There are some people who will never spend more than $12.95 on a book.
We’ve gotten so many emails from people who increased their CTR by 50% or 100% and doubled or tripled their traffic, we don’t even try to keep track of them anymore. You can read their testimonials all over this website.
But some people still won’t spend the money.
Google will be happy to take it from them instead.
It also astonishes me how many people will buy a book like that and not read it. My friend, if you’re giving Google $1000 per month for traffic (which by the way probably represents a VERY SMALL business) hey bucko, that’s $12,000 per year.
For most people, reading a 200 page book for the next couple of weeks, so as to maximize the results of a $12,000 expense, is time very well spent. Not to mention if it’s a $100,000 expense.
Some people will say “Perry, what an incredibly self-serving thing for you to say.”
Well yes, absolutely, it IS self-serving. Most everything I do is self-serving. It is self-serving for me to tell you to hire me to show you how to not waste money on Google. If that offends you, feel free to unsubscribe.
Go ahead…. keep giving Google more of your hard-earned money. If that’s your preference, then Google probably wants your money more than you do and they will probably also accomplish more with that money than you would.
I make no apologies for my ability to help you keep more money in your pocket, or for the fact that I charge for my help. I’m running a business, not a charitable foundation. Hopefully you are running a real business, too, not a charity. If it costs $50 to fix the 10-cent screw that’s keeping you from riding your $16,000 motorcycle, spend the $50 and get on with it.
If you don’t think I’m the right guy to teach you this, if you don’t relate to my style, if you don’t like my beliefs or my analogies or my haircut, buy Howie Jacobson’s book. Or Andrew Goodman’s. Or whoever you feel is up to the task.
But don’t stay ignorant.
And don’t be caught dead NOT working to master the most important aspects of your online marketing business.
P.S.: Google is sneaky. Sleep with one eye open.